Microsoft has renewed its Fable trademark in the US, confirming that it intends to use the dormant franchise in the future.
The US Patent and Trademark Office published the renewal application (opens in new tab) on June 30 after it was filed on June 26, as spotted by IGN (opens in new tab). The application confirms that Microsoft is not currently using the trademark, however it does mark "Yes" in the "Intent To Use" field.
It's important to point out that Microsoft renewing the Fable trademark doesn't mean you should expect Fable 4 (opens in new tab) news to immediately follow. If companies don't continually renew their trademarks on their intellectual property, they'll eventually become abandoned (they can still restore them at that point, but it's more hassle). It's pretty common for video game companies to just keep their trademarks up to date even if nothing ever seemingly comes of it outside the company.
However, it's tough to ignore the timing. Fans recently noticed a newly registered Fable account on Twitter (opens in new tab) - though Xbox marketing boss Aaron Greenberg was quick to downplay its revival as standard practice for existing brands. On top of that, an upcoming Xbox Series X games (opens in new tab) showcase reportedly set for late July will show off first-party games headed to Microsoft's next-gen console.
The rumored headliner for that event is Halo Infinite (opens in new tab), but a surprise appearance for Fable 4 would go a long way in courting excitement for the next round of Microsoft exclusives. The series has been dormant ever since Fable Legends was canceled late into development, and fans are definitely ready to hear more about the future of Albion - or if the rumors are right (opens in new tab), possibly even the worlds beyond.
Check out everything we know about Xbox Series X (opens in new tab).